Someone from my alma mater recently died, alledgedly killed during a fraternity initiation. It was all over the news last weekend and it was indeed a shocking and sad issue. My condolences to my schoolmate’s family.
The probability of endagering yourself during some frat event is one of the many reasons I never had any major interest with frat men. I don’t like the idea of public humiliation, ordering the person around with some difficult job, beating that same person into pulp just because he wanted to be part of your brotherhood. And when you do survive that ordeal, there’s the disciplinary actions, the risks of being in a frat war, etc.
I’ve witness first hand how a friend was hit with a steel tube in the head inside our campus building just because of the fact that his fraternity has an issue with another fraternity.
Sororities are not an exception, there has been violence in them aswell. There has been those wicked step sisters act during initiations, public humiliation, harrassment, I’ve seen some friends with cigarette wounds from disciplinary actions and I’ve witnessed cat fights between two sororities over some issue. There has also been a infamous saying spreading about an activity during sorority initiations: Sarap o Hirap? (Pleasure or Pain?). I don’t know how true the stories are but someone can’t just automatically discount what you heard just because it doesn’t happen to one certain group.
I’ve had my personal share of brotherhood/sisterhood stories. There was a time in my college life that I tried joining a sorority. After a couple of weeks of lack of sleep, heaps of reporting, mind numbing lectures from execoms, the reality started to sink it…
They’re trying to change me into something that I felt was so artificial for me. They took notice of what I wear, how I stand, how I walk, how I talked, who I hang out with, what I do… and I’ve had enough. I quitted. They tried talking me out of it, saying that quitting was a surrender to everything, that giving up won’t get me anywhere, blah blah blah… But I took my stand and walked away from them.
I don’t regret entering the initiation, they taught me a few other things that I still use to this day but for whatever reason I wanted to join that sorority, I lost the heart of it all. It was no longer important to be part of a sisterhood that has to make me suffer, wanted me to change my identity, just so they would accept me, it was no longer of my interest to be in something that I’m hiding from my family and close friends. I didn’t have to change the way I dress, the way I act, nor the way I live just so my family and friends would accept me. They loved me for who I was and without demand that no sorority could do for me.
I could have been productive in their sorority. Maybe but personally, I enjoy being my own person without the burdens of an organization’s rules and regulations to abide to. I still see a few of the members of that sorority every now and then. Whether they acknowledge my presence or not, I no longer cared. I’m not scared or embarassed or humiliated. The decision was mine to make and I believe I made the best choice.
Anyway the point is, I’m not degrading fraternities nor sororities, they can be very productive – school activities, fund raisers, donations, etc. Some individuals, who are active in their brotherhood/sisterhood even after college, are high achievers and made a marks in history. But I just can’t see the justification of the violence and exaggerated hardship required to be part of a fraternity nor a sorority.